Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

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These Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies filled with raspberry jam are a holiday cookie staple! They’re easy to make and require zero chill time!

Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies with raspberry jam on a plate

Every December for as long as I can remember, my mom has made these Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies for Christmas. They’re so buttery and ridiculously easy to make! We love raspberry jam but they can be filled with whatever flavor jam your heart desires!

More Holiday Cookie Recipes

Ingredient Breakdown

All-purpose flour – this gives the cookies structure.

Butter – provides flavor and structure. I always recommend using unsalted butter but salted butter works if that’s all you have on hand, just be sure to omit the 1/2 teaspoon of salt. Do not use cold or melted butter.

Granulated sugar – sweetens cookies.

Vanilla extract and salt – enhances flavor. Always use pure vanilla extract instead of imitation for best flavor.

Raspberry Jam – my favorite jam to fill these thumbprint cookies with is raspberry but you can use whatever jam you like best or you can even fill them with lemon curd!

Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies with raspberry jam on a plate

How To Make Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

1. Make the Shortbread Dough: In a small bowl whisk all-purpose flour and salt. Set aside.

2. Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to cream the softened butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy then add the vanilla extract.

3. Add the dry ingredients all at once then mix on low speed until just combined.

Shortbread cookie dough

4. Using a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop dough and roll into balls then place onto the lined baking sheets. Use the back of a 1/4 teaspoon to make an indent in each cookie dough ball then fill with jam.

5. Bake at 350°F for 16-18 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned.

Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies on a baking sheet

6. Make the Vanilla Icing: In a small bowl combine the confectioners’ sugar, water and vanilla extract then drizzle over cooled cookies. Store Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies in an airtight container for up to 5 days at room temperature.

Pro Tips For Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
  • Don’t over mix the dough! Only mix until the dry ingredients are just combined. Over mixing = more gluten development which means tough cookies. We don’t want any tough cookies here!
  • Bake one tray at a time on the middle oven rack. This ensures that there is even heat circulation.

Frequently Asked Questions


Can You Make Shortbread Cookie Dough In Advance?

Yes! Once you make this shortbread cookie dough you can either refrigerate it for up to 3 days wrapped tightly in plastic wrap or freeze it for up to 3 months wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and placed in a zip-top bag.

Why Is Shortbread called Shortbread?

Shortbread gets its name from its crumbly texture which is a result of the dough’s high fat content. The traditional ratio for shortbread is 1:2:3 (one part sugar to two parts butter to three parts flour).

What’s the difference between sugar cookies And Shortbread?

Unlike sugar cookies, shortbread is made without eggs or any leavening agents. Shortbread also has a more crumbly texture as a result of the dough’s high fat content. If you’re looking for sugar cookie recipes try my Chocolate Chip Sugar Cookies or Sugar Cookies with Hershey Kisses.

My Favorite Cookie Tools

If you try this recipe then please leave a rating/comment below to let me know how you liked it and feel free to ask any recipe questions you may have! 🙂

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5 from 2 votes

Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies

These Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies filled with raspberry jam are a holiday cookie staple! They're easy to make and require zero chill time!
Course Dessert
Cuisine Swedish
Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 18 minutes
Total Time 38 minutes
Servings 39 cookies
Author Maria Azzarelli

Equipment

  • Baking sheets
  • Stand mixer or hand mixer
  • Cookie scoop (I use a 1 tablespoon scoop)

Ingredients

Shortbread Dough

  • 300 g (2 1/2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 226 g (1 cup) unsalted butter, softened
  • 100 g (1/2 cup) granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ½ cup raspberry jam

Vanilla Icing

  • 120 g (1 cup) confectioners' sugar
  • 1 tbsp water
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

Shortbread Dough

  • Preheat oven to 350°F and line baking sheets with parchment paper or a silicone baking mat.
  • In a small bowl whisk all-purpose flour and salt. Set aside.
  • Use a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment to cream the softened butter and granulated sugar until light and fluffy then add the vanilla extract.
  • Add the dry ingredients all at once then mix on low speed until just combined.
  • Using a 1 tablespoon cookie scoop, scoop dough and roll into balls then place onto the lined baking sheets. Use the back of a 1/4 teaspoon to make an indent in each cookie dough ball then fill with jam.
  • Bake cookies for 16-18 minutes or until the bottoms of the cookies are lightly browned.

Vanilla Icing

  • In a small bowl combine the confectioners' sugar, water and vanilla extract then drizzle over cooled cookies.

Notes

  • Weigh your ingredients using a kitchen scale! Measuring ingredients by volume is not accurate.
 
 
  • Butter: I recommend using unsalted butter. You can use salted butter, just be sure to omit the 1/2 tsp salt.
 
  • Store Shortbread Thumbprint Cookies in an airtight container for up to 5 days at room temperature.

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4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    These cookies were delicious! I made half of them with raspberry jam and the other half with apricot preserves.

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